Quick Strikes: Five numbers to know for Montreal Impact vs. Portland Timbers
The Portland Timbers are on the road this week, traveling to Canada to take on the Montreal Impact on Sunday (4:30pm PT, ROOT SPORTS). Last week, the Timbers churned out a strong 2-1 win against the Colorado Rapids in the confines of Providence Park, coming back in the second half en route to three points. Portland is now just three points under the red line, and firmly in the race for the playoffs with 14 games left. Let's take a look at five numbers to know for Sunday's match.
Five Defender Liam Ridgewell made his impact felt in his first game for the Timbers on Friday, dominating the channel and organizing the Portland counterattack efficiently. Ridgewell had five interceptions against Colorado, the most of any Timbers player, to go along with seven clearances and the second-best duel success rate behind captain Will Johnson.
3 This is only the third match between these two teams in MLS play, seeing each other only once per-season since 2012. While the Timbers are 0-2-0 in MLS history, the two teams have a history going back to their shared USL days where Portland was 8-4-3 over the course of fifteen games in the second division.
Two The 2014 AT&T MLS All-Star Game roster has been announced and the two of the host-team Timbers have made the squad. Midfielders Diego Valeri and Will Johnson have both been named to the squad of 23. Valeri, who leads the team with eight assists in addition to scoring four goals on the season, was one of MLS Commissioner Don Garber's two picks. Johnson was selected by MLS All-Star and Timbers head coach Caleb Porter.
68 Donovan Ricketts has been one of the Timbers leaders this season, showing quick hands as he now is in a tie with NYRB's Luis Robles for the lead in MLS in saves. At 68 saves and just 25 goals allowed, Ricketts has a better save-to-goals ratio than Robles, who also has 68 saves to go along with 31 goals.
11 & 12 Portland has been strong on the road this season, scoring 11 goals away from Providence Park. For comparison, the Impact have scored just 12 at home and are one of just four MLS teams with a negative goal differential on their home ground.